For those who may not know, Kathy and AJ met in high school when they were awkward and pimply sophomores. They first saw each other at a church youth program, but it would be another year until they actually met in person. In Kathy's words, AJ seemed kind, exuberant, and hard to ignore. Kathy gave off a quiet introverted vibe yet AJ could tell that Kathy was attentive and outspoken. They got to know each other more at the start of their Junior year where AJ would drive Kathy and her sister to school in the morning while blasting Blink-182. It wasn't long into Junior year that Kathy and AJ started dating after attending a school dance together. Call it puppy love or intuition, but Kathy had feeling that they would marry each other in the future. AJ just didn't know it yet. Kathy and AJ's relationship overcame the challenges of a long-distance relationship throughout college while they attended schools in different states. They looked forward to seeing each other during the holiday breaks as well as the times where enough money could be saved up for spontaneous flights to visit one another. After AJ finished his undergrad, he moved back to Colorado and was quickly converted to a dog lover after spending more time with Kathy's dog Peyton.
We wanted to go back to San Diego where AJ attended college at the end of summer 2019 to relax and revisit some old favorite spots from when Kathy and AJ dated long-distance. After a fun-packed day of hiking and paragliding in Torrey Pines, swimming and eating many tacos, AJ led Kathy to a quiet and peaceful spot on the cliffs of Point Loma to watch the sunset. Even though AJ was trying his best to act normal and not give off any suspicion, Kathy could tell something was off as AJ is usually not so keen on taking pictures. As the sun was setting, AJ asked Kathy to pose for a picture with her back to the camera, he then said "turn around". When she turned around, AJ was on one knee and proposed. Kathy of course said YES! After almost a decade of dating, we finally got engaged.
After our engagement, Kathy finished graduate school and we set our sights on moving to Minnesota to experience a new city and follow a great job opportunity in Kathy's career. While the COVID-19 pandemic was certainly a stressful time, we didn't let it stop us from buying our first home together in 2020. Since moving to Minnesota, we have adopted two new dogs (brothers Rowan and Gus), taken on several home improvement projects, and persevered through many frigid MN winters. At the end of 2021, AJ left his job and pursued one of his life goals to start his own company which continues to grow and keep things interesting. With all of those life events down and COVID finally easing, we began planning our wedding last year and cannot wait to celebrate it with everyone!